Here is the Imagination of the Black Radical (2020)

Rhea Storr

Here is the Imagination of the Black Radical Rhea Storr UK16mm & digital10 min 2020

The music, movements, and oral histories of Junkanoo—a distinctive Bahamian cultural medium in the form of a street carnival—set the rhythm of Rhea Storr’s video. Located in this vernacular tradition is an emergent Black radical imagination, one that envisions an Afrofuturism of the present, which the film reworks and remixes. – NYFF

“Black radical imagination” is a term used by Robin D.G. Kelley predominantly to describe US Black radical organizing in the 20th century. This film instead aims to utilize a geographical location and history that is Caribbean-focused. Here is the Imagination of the Black Radical gives voice to the innovations of Junkanoo within an experimental film history. One that draws on the aesthetics of 1980s Black film workshops and does not adhere to documentary realism but produces counter narratives. A 16mm cyanotype blue wash is the signal of Black imaginative life. Its mission is to communicate incommunicability. Knowledge that is enacted or performed, to which film cannot do justice. – Rhea Storr

Streaming Details

This film is available to stream globally.

Program Partners

This film is co-presented with Artcite Inc.

Image credits: all artworks, stills, and portraits courtesy of the artist © Rhea Storr.

about the artist

Rhea Storr (UK) is a visual artist, filmmaker, and writer born in Leeds, UK in 1991. Storr’s recent films explore representations of Black and mixed-race culture, and masquerade as a space of celebration and protest, investigating the social structures, costume, and language of carnival; the visibility of black bodies in rural spaces; and her identity as an artist of Bahamian and British heritage. She received a BFA from Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Arts, University of Oxford (2013), and an MA in Contemporary Practice from the Royal College of Art (2017). She is pursuing a PhD in Media and Communication at Goldsmiths, University of London. Her work has been widely exhibited at festivals, museums, and galleries internationally, including the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Lisson Gallery, New York Film Festival, Institute of Contemporary Arts (London), European Media Art Festival, Focal Point Gallery, Kurzfilm Festival Hamburg, Open City Documentary Festival, Fotomuseum Winterthur, Berwick Film and Media Arts Festival, Whitechapel Gallery, Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles, Saatchi Gallery, Crossroads Film Festival, Istanbul Museum of Modern Art, Kassel Dokfest, Circa Art, Somerset House, Chicago Underground Film Festival, Kunstmuseum Bonn, BFI London Film Festival, Videonale, Women Of The Lens Film Festival, Experiments in Cinema, Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival, LUX, and Bonniers Konsthall, among many others. She is the recipient of the inaugural Louis Le Prince Experimental Film Prize (2018), the Aesthetica Art Prize (2020), and was twice shortlisted for the Red Mansion Art Prize (2013, 2016). Writing about her practice has appeared in The Guardian, Dazed, ARTnews, Indie Wire, WomenCinemakers, Frieze, and Mubi. She is Head of Film Labs at not/nowhere, an arts cooperative providing access to analogue film and media equipment, workshops, screenings, and exhibitions, with a focus on serving BIPOC. She lives and works in London, UK.

Artist interview